Monday, 7 August 2017

Bedroom delights

Decorating completed

Since my last post I have made great progress on my Regency bedroom. I added an extra window in the room as I love to see dolls houses with windows around the room, that show off elaborate curtains. I recently bought some beautiful gold and cream silk to make the curtains and bed furnishings, however they may take me longer to complete as I haven't decided on the design yet. I also added a false door to give the illusion of other rooms beyond.

I had looked for a long time for wallpaper for this room when I came across this wallpaper on ebay. I don't think my photos show off the pattern very well, but it is an oriental design and I just loved the colours. I also love how the blue paint emphasises the colours of the wallpaper. I actually mixed the colour myself and I was delighted with the end result. 

I bought the fireplace from Phoenix Models and spray painted it black. I then went on to make the fire surround myself from pieces of scrap wood. Please don't look too closely at my moldings as I haven't finished all the fine details yet. I like to use poly filler to fill in any gaps and then repaint where necessary. 

I haven't decided if I want to add any cornice, so I will live with what I have done so far and decide at a later date. At the moment I am just enjoying this room, it makes me very happy every time I view it. I just wish I could live in it myself.

Until the next time

Take care

Jayne x

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Window Dilemma

A Problem Solved

For a long time now I have been struggling to find a suitable solution for the  windows of my Regency home. As the window frames have no recess any glass or acrylic covering has to sit on top of the frame itself. I did use real picture frame glass (that I cut really badly) to fit in between each pane on a previous project. However I wasn't really happy with the finished look. 

I'm not a big fan of using acrylic as it scratches easily and often has a cloudy appearance and picture glass is really far too thick for me to get neat little rectangles for the panes, so I started to research on the Internet. I was initially looking to buy thin glass, when I thought about using microscope slides. A few minutes later and I had ordered two boxes of slides for less than £2.00 a box.

As you can see above the slides are really thin. They were almost perfect, I thought with a bit of work I could cut them to fit inside the window panes. However they were about a millimeter too wide, I tried to sand the sides down, first with sandpaper and then with my dremel, but it wasn't working, and  I wasn't happy with all glass particles flying around.

Then I tried another tactic, I placed three of the slides next to each other and they were a perfect size to cover two panes and all I had to do was cut a small piece from the length. Feeling pleased with myself I set about cutting off 1cm from the length with a small glass cutting tool. About ten slides in and I hadn't managed to cut one straight line. Not one to give up I was back on the Internet looking at the correct way to cut glass. I watched a few Youtube videos and got back to the job in hand. I had better luck this time, and while they are not all perfectly straight, they were successful enough.

If you look closely enough you can see the outline of the microscopes slides on the top windows (this is the inside of my Regency library front panel). 

It has been almost a year since I completed my library, so it is long overdue for me to finally add the front panel with the curtains I made. 

I am slowly adding items to my kitchen and once I have made enough progress, I will post some photos for you to see.

I have several weeks off work for the summer (I work in a school) so I'm hoping to get a lot of miniature work done. I am starting work on my Regency bedroom and I should have all the main painting and decorating done quite quickly.

Until the next time

Take care

Jayne x 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Kitchen dilemmas

Where to start

Now that I have finished all of the DIY and decorating of my Regency kitchen comes the hard part of adding the finishing touches. I haven't decided yet if I want to put a doorway on the right-hand side to lead into the scullery/pantry area that I intend to add later. If I do add a door (and there is a good chance that I will) I will move the long table on the right into the other room.

I decided to paint the dresser rather than varnish it, as I didn't want it to match the other furniture. I'm not quite sure if it is in keeping with the Regency era, however I like the differing contrast of the furniture.


I have added some more items around the range that I bought from Sussex Crafts. After I took this photo I realised that the Andirons should be the other way around. The family are expecting a real feast, hence the rather large pig roast. This was my attempt which I made out of polymer clay, its no masterpiece by any exception but I quite like it and it will do until I find a better replacement.

I have already got my mind set on my next Regency room and that will be a bedroom. A ladies bedroom to be exact. I thought it was time to create an elegant and feminine room after working on my gentleman's library and the kitchen for so long. 

My mind is full of ideas for the bedroom, I just need to stay focused on my kitchen for a little bit longer and add all the kitchenware that a Regency household requires.

Until the next time

Take care

Jayne c 

Sunday, 16 April 2017

All sorts

While I often neglect my blog for long periods of time, I am still fairly busy making all sorts of miniatures in my spare time. I thought I would show you some of the miniatures I have bought or made over the past few months.

Firstly, here are some items I have bought lately.

A large dresser from A World of My Own. I wanted a substantial dresser for my Regency Kitchen and this one fits the bill.

A large kitchen table from Country Contrast, a three tiered glass cake/serving stand from Glass craft and a delightful egg holder from McQueenies Miniatures. I just need to make some polymer clay eggs when I get the time.

I want to have a lot of copper items in my kitchen, so I have started collecting  items whenever I see them. I bought the saucepan on the left from the Cancer Research stand at the Spring 2017 Miniatura show and the Jam pan and jelly mold from Country Treasures. It wasn't until I got home that I realised the saucepan was actually made by Country Treasures as well. 

The very realistic cut loaf of bread was made by Amanda Speakman, from AmanSpeak Miniatures. It is delighful.

The two plant pots were from the Small Wonders Miniatures website. I had gone a bit mad printing and cutting out plant leaves, but I was struggling to find good quality plant pots online, until I found these. They are actually made by A Womans Touch Miniature China and I think they are lovely. I was really pleased with them and I think I will consider buying more of their products in the future.

My photo's don't do the plants justice, they look much better in the flesh, so to speak. I have also added some dried tea leaves to the surface to resemble earth, I just haven't taken any updated photos to show you.

Miniature sewing - of a sort

Next up is my attempt to dress a doll. Of all my miniature passions, dolls house dolls has got to be my most favorite and coveted items of them all. I spend hours looking at and admiring miniature dolls and marveling at the skill of the makers. I have therefore wanted to have a go at dressing a doll of my own. How hard can it be? I asked myself. Well, I realised that I am a very visual person, I need to 'see' step-by-step how something is made, rather than read and understand written instructions. 

The shirt, waistcoat and trousers were not so much of an issue. The trousers (or breeches) need to be more tapered at the knees. The coat was a much bigger problem. I couldn't fathom out the written instructions at all and I did manage to sew the coat together, but probably not in the way I should have.
However, as I'm not going to go into the business of selling dressed dolls, I am fairly happy with my end result. I just have to avoid looking too closely at all the errors I have made. 

I was supposed to sew the collar on to the coat somehow, but I ended up gluing it on instead, so It looks very scruffy.

Here he is in pride of place in his library.

Moving on to my next miniature makes. I bought some mahogany wood sheets from Miniatura and I made a tiny salt box for my Regency kitchen

I then went on to make a cutlery box. I had seen a similar one on eBay recently which I really wanted, but I thought the design looked fairly easy to recreate.
so a few hours later I had made this.

It's difficult to see inside, but I made dividers in the base from card and small dowels cut to size. I then glued the fabric over the top.

I know my post has been a bit of everything today, but I hope you have enjoyed seeing what I've been up to.

Until the next time

Take care

Jayne x

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Regency Kitchen Update

I have finally made some progress on my Regency Kitchen, so I thought I would show you what I've been up since my last post.

I made the fire surround from wood planks and thick mat-board, and I created a center column from some scrap wood. I used a brick stencil and paste from Bromley Craft Products, as it is a lovely product to use and it looks so effective. I will buy a 'dummy' bread oven door from Sussex Crafts when I attend Miniatura in March, to put on the center column. You can't really see very well in the photo, but I used some foam board for the back walls and I scored tiny bricks into it with a ball ended stylus and then painted them red. I also put in the small window (slightly open) for added realism. 

Once I had painted all the walls I then laid the flooring. I used real sandstone flagstones which did cost me quite a lot, but I feel they were well worth the money. Cutting the tiles was very difficult as I was only using a Stanley knife. My fingers were very achy afterwards.

I really liked the initial look of the flagstones and I was going to leave them as they were, but as I had some grout mixture from many years ago, I decided to grout between the cracks. You can see from the photos below how much of a difference the grout made. I was glad that I took the time to grout the floor as it looks so much better.

I made the fire on the left hand side from two metal mint tins I got from Aldi and super-glued a fire grate from Sussex Crafts between them. I added a brass tap to resemble a water boiler and two small drain covers, also from Sussex Crafts, on the top for pot burners. I then sprayed it all with black paint. I just need to buy a light-up log fire for the grate. I have already bought a smoke jack spit and a chimney crane, I just need to add them later.

On the right hand side I have bought a low stove from Hearth and Home. It is really well made and the service I received from Dick and Jane was excellent.

I also made this sink unit to go under the window. I painted the inside in a grey paint to look like it was lead lined, as it would have traditionally been in the Georgian/ Regency era.

I then made a water unit above the sink as there wouldn't have been any running water. I bought the lovely delph tiles from Romney Miniatures for 45p  each, which I think was a bargain.

Now that all the hard work has been done I just need to add the finishing touches. I will be collecting a few items I have ordered when I attend Miniatura in March, and I will also be on the look out for other items to display.

Until the next time

Take care

Jayne x